Riders facing poverty pay and dangerous work form global network to highlight Deliveroo’s exploitative business model to investors

15 Mar 2021

Deliveroo and its early investors expect to raise billions from an imminent IPO on the London Stock Exchange, but the riders who make their service possible are crying foul. Riders say Deliveroo’s predatory business model means workers shoulder significant risks, including low pay rates, dangerous working conditions and unfair deactivations.

A global network of Deliveroo riders is warning potential investors of growing legal, regulatory, and reputational risks, urging them not to back the company until it improves rider safety, conditions and pay. Riders published a letter to Deliveroo CEO Will Shu calling on the company to stop treating riders like second-class citizens.

Despite attempts by Deliveroo and other gig economy companies to misclassify riders, courts are increasingly recognising direct employment relationships and the legal and regulatory obligations of platform companies.

Last month, a Dutch court ruled that Deliveroo misclassified its workers as independent contractors to avoid responsibility for holiday, sick pay and other employment entitlements. The Supreme Court in Spain came to a similar conclusion in September 2020.

The decision was followed up last week by a landmark agreement of the Spanish social partners that will give delivery riders presumption of employment status and access to algorithms regulating their work.

The ETF is fully supporting the #Rights4Riders network and is dedicated to ensuring fair working conditions for platform workers – also in light of the upcoming EU initiative on platform work.

You will find more on ETF position here.